The fear of what can happen while I’m there,
It scrapes its talons through the juicy parts,
Of my brain that flickers with anxiety.
Its vast feathery wings beat against my body,
As I try to tell myself that this is all for money.
I need the money if I want to live,
Without it humans simply shrivel up and die.
It’s our lifeblood, it makes the world go round.
But me, I hate the stuff.
It’s crude papery body flutters through my fingers,
Never there quite long enough,
To make a difference in life.
It simply swoops into my line of sight,
Plucks all the happiness that’s curled inside my hand.
It tells me that I’m never good enough,
That my boss will want me out, or want me dead.
Eventually it pecks until there’s nothing left.
I’m just a shell of who I used to be.
Perhaps I’m shy of work, of effort and of toil.
Perhaps I am just trouble, a burden on the state.
Whatever the reason, I’m scared of what will happen.
I’m scared of what will rob me of the life I have,
I’m terrified of the lifelike claws that dig their way,
Inside my thoughts, into my life.
I’m holding on but I don’t know
How much longer this can last.
My grasp is failing.
I am falling.
It is done.
I work part time because I’ve had some horrible experiences at work that have really left me quite frightened. Some people might sneer and say that I’m being a bit of a snowflake, but I’m really trying and this is a poem about that battle.
Every day that I go to my job I have to battle internally with all of my demons and, quite frankly, it’s exhausting. I sometimes worry that I’m work shy, but I know from the amount of effort that I have to put in to just show up that that can’t be the case. I must be committed if I am going to this much trouble.
On a daily basis I have to tell myself that I am trying and the very fact I am getting in and standing on my own two feet is proof that I am winning the battle, little by little. It is terrifying and yet I still do it.
And then, I have the daily reminder that I need to work if I am going to have the money to eat and do the things that I want to. I sometimes worry that eventually it’s all going to dry up and then I will die. It feels like a wild animal is chasing me down and that is where this poem comes from.
If you are struggling with a fear of work and getting fired and everything that goes along with that, then I hear you. It’s horrible to fear something that is so important in life. I hate when I hear people say that they live for their jobs because I wonder what is wrong with me; why can’t I have that passion? Instead I am left with a crippling fear and a life that I feel is half lived. If you are like me then I would love for you to know that there are other people out there. You are not alone. Speak to someone, get counselling. Just don’t let it drive you to the point where you are done.